Snow College gets new soccer coach
By Matt Harris
EPHRAIM—One of the most successful sports programs in the Sanpete Valley witnessed a major change last weekend as the Snow College soccer program hired a new coach.
Snow men’s and women’s soccer welcomed new head coach Charles Long to the program in a press release last Wednesday. Long takes over the program following the departure of the pioneer head coach Nuno Gourgel, who accepted an assistant coaching position on a brand-new staff at Robert Morris University in Pennsylvania, an NCAA Division I team.
This will be the first time Snow’s soccer teams will be playing under a new coach.
“After an extensive search that included a number of talented and qualified candidates from all over the world, we are pleased to welcome Coach Long to Snow College,” Snow Athletic Director Robert Nielson said. “He brings a great deal of experience to the program and we look forward to continued growth and success of our men’s and women’s soccer programs.”
Long joins the Badgers with over 25 years of coaching experience from youth to NCAA soccer. Most recently, Long spent the last two years leading the men’s and women’s soccer program at Cloud County Community College in Concordia, Kans. Under his direction, CCCC’s men’s went 27-8-1 while the women’s team went 29-7-1.
Long’s coaching career began in 1982 at Belhaven College before making stops at the University of West Florida, Mount Mary College and Western Texas College.
Prior to 1982, Long was a professional soccer player in the American Soccer League for a short period of time. He graduated from Wheaton College in 1982 and earned a Masters in Physical Education in 1989 from Mississippi College.
Long inherits a program which has garnered eight region titles in three years, and one district title. Gourgel led the men’s soccer team to Scenic West Athletic Conference Tournament championship wins in both 2017 and 2018, despite not winning the SWAC outright either year.
Snow men’s soccer has finished ranked as highly as No. 10 nationally, never finishing outside the top-20.
Gourgel excelled with the women’s team, leading them to an overall record of 59-7-11 over three years. Gourgel was named the SWAC Coach of the Year every single year, and the women’s team won both the outright SWAC title and the tournament championship for three years straight.
In 2019, Snow women’s soccer followed up their third consecutive title year with a West District Championship win, earning them their first ever trip to the NJCAA Championship tournament. The team finished No. 6 nationally.
“We express our gratitude to Coach Gourgel for helping to build an extremely competitive, and nationally recognized soccer program in such a short period of time,” Nielson said. “We appreciate his dedication and leadership over the past four years. We wish Nuno and his wife, Dakota, all the very best on this new opportunity.”